There are 9 so called Great Walks
They pass through diverse and spectacular scenery in New Zealand. They are all unique and different.
Great Walks tracks are well formed and easy to follow, but have to be booked long time in advance because they might be busy. You need several days to complete them.
There are hundreds and thousands of other stunning walks available as well. They often have the advantage, that you can spontaneously decide perhaps weather or mood depending if you want to do one. Information centres or DOC (Departement of Conservation) offices are well informed and can give you information and maps about tracks available.
This is what NewZealand.com says:
“Welcome to a walker’s paradise, where nine Great Walks and hundreds of other trails traverse an incredible range of landscapes, from isolated beaches and rugged coastal cliffs, through farmland, wetlands, river valleys and virgin forest, to high country tussock lands and dramatic mountain ranges.
Legendary landscapes are reason enough to follow New Zealand’s walking trails, but in fact they are just part of the allure. Many pathways follow historic byways and pass iconic natural wonders, or offer encounters with unique wildlife such as kiwi, penguins and fur seals.
An enviable hut network, peaceful nature campsites and boutique lodges make overnight stops truly memorable experiences. The diversity of tracks across New Zealand’s national parks and reserves means there’s something for everyone, from leisurely nature trails that bring unique ecosystems into focus, to challenging multi-day adventures in remote, untouched wildernesses.
Although many walks explore natural places, they are surprisingly easy to reach. Towns and villages are seldom far away, offering a wealth of visitor information and services. Passionate local tour operators run guided trips with delicious food and comfortable lodging, making it possible to reach places you only ever dreamed of. This guide presents just a taste of New Zealand’s amazing trails. We hope it leads you on a journey of discovery.”
We live on the top of the South Island and after 10 years we still did not do all the once available in our area. My favorite one last year was the Pearce River Walk.
It is a 45-minute drive from us inland. You follow a river to its source, a 5-hour return walk. While walking along the river you have to cross it 28 times – and that is fun. You do not take your shoes off! But that is fine. I thought I would get blisters in my hiking boots, But no problem at all. We made us big wooden walking sticks, which helped enormously to cross the river bed comfortably. We did not meet any other people. I was delighted to be able to observe the rare blue duck (Whio).